Beyond BT

Spiritual Growth for Jews

BBT Links for January 31st – Taming the Shul Kiddush, X’s, O’s and the Torah,

Taming The Wild Shul Kiddush Scene Studying X’s, O’s and the Torah

Are BTs Treated as Second Class Citizens?

A few weeks ago an article about BTs came to our attention. For a number of reasons we decided not to run it, but some of our favorite BT advocates such as Rabbi Adlerstein, Rabbi Maryles and Rabbi Horowitz decided to run with the article. Instead of us discussing what we didn’t like about the […]

A Baal Teshuva’s Father’s Perspectives

By “David Shub” As the father of two BTs, the first words of advice to parents of other BTs is to say that you cannot make it a power struggle. Not only is it not a power struggle, but it is not a “fight” of who is right and who is wrong. If someone had […]

So NOT Deprived

My family of origin thinks that I am deprived. I am limited to eating only kosher food, and not any kosher food. If it has a “K” on the box, that isn’t good enough. When I go into the Food Court of the local mall, I can’t eat anything I want. If I should have […]

BBT Links for January 24th – Poster Policy, Jews Without Dues, Beshalach DTs

Setting a Shul Poster Policy Young Jews rebelling against paying dues Beshalach Divrei Torah

How Can We Get Beyond the Failure Narrative?

As Jews we want to improve ourselves, our communities and the world. That’s our calling. Perhaps that’s why some very fine people, including many articles and comments on Beyond BT, scrutinize our people and institutions in search of improvement. It’s a noble cause, but the downside is that we get caught in a failure narrative. […]

Song, Hope and Salvation in Honor of the L’Chaim of Yaakov and Amanda

An elaboration of remarks made this week at the l’chaim for my son Yaakov and his kallah, Amanda: It’s especially fitting to celebrate an engagement this week, when we will observe Shabbos Shira. It’s difficult for us to imagine what it was like for the Jews of Egypt when, after watching the systematic and miraculous […]

Tzafat – An Ecletic City of Seekers

By Laurie Rappeport English-speaking immigrants have been settling in Tzfat since the founding of the State but in the ’70s the numbers began to grow as many Anglo olim were searching for spirituality combined with a desire to live in a small supportive community. The English-speaking community of Tzfat is comprised of people of all […]

BBT Links for January 17th – Vounteer or else, Guide to Blessing, Ramban on Bo

Member Participation – Coerce, Encourage or Accept The OU Guide to Blessings Rabbi Noson Weiez discusses the Famous Ramban at the end of Parsha Bo.

For Children of BTs – Would You Like to Participate in a Study?

You are invited to participate in a research study being conducted by Tova Lane, PsyM, a doctoral student at the Graduate School of Applied and Professional Psychology. The research study is being conducted for a dissertation study. All information recorded in this survey is anonymous. This means there will be no recording of any information […]

Affirming the BT Growth Mission

I was at a Torah Umesorah convention recently and I had the pleasure of spending time with a young Rabbi who is dedicating his life to building a Torah community and helping Jews with little or no Jewish education embrace, Torah, mitzvos and Hashem, at a pace that makes sense for them. The fact that […]

The Swinging Pendulum of Yiddishkeit

By “Always a BT” I have noticed a phenomenon of late that makes me ponder the proverbial swinging pendulum of Torah observance. It hit me recently, having attended a number of simchas & observing the dress & mode of conduct of my own generation in stark contrast to that of our children. My husband & […]

BBT Links for January 10th – The Candyman, Jewish Genius, AJOP 2013

Who Can Make the Sun Shine? – The Candy Man Can! Endangered Jewish Genius AJOP 2013 this coming Shabbos through Tuesday including an Inreach Sub Conference on Sunday.

Do We Show Enough Appreciation for Kiruv?

Yes it’s easy to find faults with any Klal institution and Kiruv is no different. But if we stop and think about how much Baalei Teshuva owe to those dedicated to helping people find a path to Hashem and Torah and mitzvos we probably would be much slower to criticize. If we truly realized how […]

A Webinar Series on a BT’s Guide to Fitting In – Kicks off with Rabbi Horowitz this Thursday 1/10

How do I find a Rav? How do I relate to a Rav? What’s so important about finding the right community to settle into? After being frum twenty five years I still have no idea about how to marry off my FFB children. Should my kids be doing Skype with their secular grandparents, aunts, and […]

Rejoice O Youth, In Your Fiftieth Anniversary

The year was 1962. It was only seventeen years after the end of World War II. Many Holocaust survivors were rebuilding their lives in America. Those teenagers and young adults who had outwitted the Nazis, many of whom had watched in silent horror as their parents and younger siblings were murdered, had come to these […]

On Davening as a BT

Davening is the place where the BT can feel vindicated. Park for a moment the speed factor: that is keeping up or better yet catching up with the Minyan. In the private sense, I think most BT’s tend to take the Avodah- the job of it seriously and are shocked and outraged when in the […]

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